3. His Resurrection
The bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ after His death is a fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy (Ps 16:10; Acts 2:31). But more than that, it is foundational to faith in Christ for salvation (Rom 10:9, 10). Paul affirms that the Christian faith is based on the truth of the resurrection of Christ.
Read 1 Corinthians 15:14-19. If the resurrection of Jesus Christ were not a fact, then:
- the apostle’s preaching would be in vain (v. 14);
- the faith of the believers in Corinth (and the faith of all Christians) would be in vain (v. 14);
- the apostles and others ‘would be false witnesses (v.15);
- the Corinthian church (and all Christians) would still be in their sins (v.17);
- those who have died believing in Christ would be without salvation (v.18);
- Christians would be of all men the most miserable (v.19).
The literal, physical resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead is a key component of the Gospel (1 Cor 15:4; 2 Tim 2:8; also, see “What Is The Gospel?”) .
The resurrection of Christ stands alone in its importance and uniqueness in all of history.
The following scriptural facts help us understand the implications of Christ’s resurrection for every believer:
- Jesus Christ was truly and completely dead physically. He did not just faint, nor was He in a temporary coma (Mark 15:44,45; John 19:33-35; Rev 1:18).
- Jesus Christ was bodily resurrected; the resurrected Christ was OT a disembodied spirit or an apparition (Luke 24:36,39,41 -45; Ps 16:10; Acts 2:31).
- Jesus Christ, after His resurrection, was seen in His physical body by many witnesses (Luke 24:30- 36; John 20: 19,26; Acts 1:3,21,22; 1 Cor 15:3-8).
- Jesus Christ’s resurrection was unique in that He would never die again (Acts 13:34; Rom 6:9,10; 2 Tim 1:10; Rev 1:18). There have been other people miraculously resurrected from the dead (e.g., John 11:1-44), but each of these goes on to die a physical death at the end of their life.
- Jesus Christ’s resurrection proves His claim to Deity (Matt 12:38-40; John 2:18-22; Rom 1:4).
- Jesus Christ’s resurrection shows that His sacrifice on the Cross was accepted by God the Father (Rom 4:25 ; Heb 9:23-28; 10:11-14).
Jesus ls Alive!
Jesus Christ died on the Cross for our sins, then was resurrected on the third day. The following facts could be true ONLY of a living Savior Who is presently and eternally reigning in power and glory:
- Christ is Head over all things to the Church (Eph 1:19-23);
- Christ is our High Priest, representing the heavenly Father to us, and representing us to God the Father (Rom 8:27; Heb 2:17; 3:1; 4:14,15; 5:5-11; 6:20; 7:25,26; 9:11);
- Christ has given spiritual gifts to the Church (Eph 4:8-13);
- Christ, as “the first born from the dead “(Col 1:18), guarantees for all believers a physical resurrection at His second coming, and the same for the rest of humanity at Judgment Day(Acts 17:31; 26:23; Rom 8:11; 1 Cor 15:20-24,50-52; Phil 3:7- 11; Col 1:18; Rev 20:11- 15).[For more about the final resurrections, see “Doctrine of Last Things”.]
“But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the first fruits pf those who have fallen asleep (died]” (1 Cor 15:20). Hallelujah! Christ is risen! Thus, through every toil, sorrow and tribulation, believers may be confident and joyful – knowing that Christ has conquered death, we are triumphant , and we will rise and reign with Him victorious throughout eternity!